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ArthroCare Releases New SpineWand(R) for Less Invasive Spinal Surgeries
Date:10/23/2007

ArthroCare's MD SpineWand Uses Smaller Incisions in Routinely Performed

Spinal Surgeries

AUSTIN, Texas, Oct. 23 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- ArthroCare(R) Corp. (Nasdaq: ARTC), a leader in developing state-of-the-art, minimally invasive surgical products, announced today at the North American Spine Society Annual Meeting that its MD SpineWand(R) is now available for use in some of the most common spinal surgeries.

The MD SpineWand is designed to remove soft tissue -- including disc material -- through small incisions, which avoid damage to surrounding structures and anatomy. Lumbar microdiscectomy is the most commonly performed surgical procedure in which disc material is removed. Lumbar microdiscectomy is primarily performed to treat the symptoms associated with a herniated disc. Approximately 400,000 lumbar microdiscectomies are performed each year, and this procedure typically requires a large (approximate 6mm) annulotomy, or incision, made into the outer ring of the disc in order to gain access to the disc tissue. Clinical studies have that shown a large annulotomy weakens the disc and increases the risk of reherniation, requiring follow-up surgery(i).

The device was developed in conjunction with Kevin T. Foley, M.D., F.A.C.S., a renowned minimally invasive spine surgeon and professor of neurosurgery at the University of Tennessee, Memphis.

"The device effectively removes soft tissue, including disc material, and provides patients with the benefits of a less invasive approach," said Dr. Foley. During the less invasive procedure, the MD SpineWand gently and safely removes tissue in a controlled manner using ArthroCare's patented Coblation technology. The MD SpineW
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SOURCE ArthroCare Corporation
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